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Produced by the University of California, Berkeley’s Social Science Matrix, the Matrix Podcast features interviews with scholars from across the UC Berkeley campus. The Matrix Podcast is hosted by Professor Michael Watts, Emeritus “Class of 1963” Professor of Geography and Development Studies at UC Berkeley. Listen and subscribe on Apple Podcasts.

Podcast

Interview

A New Voice for Black History: Xavier Buck, PhD

In this episode of the Matrix Podcast, Julia Sizek interviews Xavier Buck, Deputy Director of the Dr. Huey P. Newton Foundation. Buck graduated with a PhD in History from UC Berkeley in 2021. The discussion focuses on Buck’s work in public history, including his @historyin3 channel (which can be found on TikTok and Instagram), his current work at the Huey P. Newton Foundation, and his dissertation research, which shows connections between Black experiences in Louisiana and California in the 20th century.

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Matrix On Point

Recap

Matrix on Point: Leaving Afghanistan

On September 7, 2021, UC Berkeley’s Social Science Matrix and the Institute of International Studies (IIS) hosted a panel discussion, “Matrix on Point: Leaving Afghanistan,” that featured a group of scholars examining the geopolitical and humanitarian consequences of the end of the 20-year war in Afghanistan. The panel featured Omar Sharifi, from American University of Afghanistan; Robert Crews, from Stanford University; Dipali Mukhopadhyay, from the University of Minnesota's Humphrey School of Public Affairs; and Georgi Derluguian, from NYU Abu Dhabi. UC Berkeley's Daniel Sargent, moderated. Watch the video, or listen to the discussion as a podcast.

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Podcast

Interview

Matrix Podcast: Interview with Juliana Friend, PhD Candidate, Anthropology

In this podcast, Julia Sizek interviews Juliana Friend, a PhD candidate in the UC Berkeley Department of Anthropology, whose research focuses on the intersection of technology, privacy, and culture. Her dissertation, “Don’t Click Here! Porn, Privacy, and Digital Dissidence in Senegal,” examines how digital dissidents are transforming the idea of sutura (discretion or modesty), a concept used to describe the appropriate relationship between private and public life in Senegal.

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Podcast

Interview

Matrix Podcast: The Past and Present of Teletherapy

In this episode of the Social Science Matrix podcast, Julia Sizek, a Phd candidate in the UC Berkeley Department of Anthropology, interviews scholars Hannah Zeavin and Valerie Black, UC Berkeley researchers who study the history and present of teletherapy, which describes all forms of remote therapy, from letter-writing to chatbots.

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Interview

Podcast

Matrix Podcast: Interview with Youjin Chung

In this episode of the Matrix Podcast, Professor Michael Watts interviews Youjin Chung, Assistant Professor of Sustainability and Equity, with a joint appointment in the Energy and Resources Group and the Department of Environmental Science, Policy, and Management.

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Matrix On Point

Recap

Matrix on Point: America’s Pursuit of Racial Justice

A "Matrix on Point" panel on the long (and continuing) struggle for racial justice in America led to a thought-provoking conversation among Professors Monica Bell, from Yale Law School; Leigh Raiford, from UC Berkeley; and Brandon M. Terry, from Harvard University. Moderated by UC Berkeley's Christopher Muller.

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Matrix Book Salon

Recap

Matrix Book Salon: “Race to the Bottom: How Racial Appeals Work in American Politics”

Recorded on May 7, 2021, this UC Berkeley Social Science Matrix Book Salon featured the book, "Race to the Bottom: How Racial Appeals Work in American Politics," by LaFleur Stephens-Dougan, Assistant Professor in the Department of Politics at Princeton University, who was joined in conversation by Taeku Lee, Professor of Political Science and Law at UC Berkeley.

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Matrix On Point

Recap

Truth & Denial: Searching for Information in the Digital Era

On April 22, 2021, a "Matrix on Point" panel discussion focused on questions of objectivity, disinformation, and the construction of truth from a media-consumption (rather than media-production) perspective, focusing on how internet users find information, how algorithms play a deterministic role in search results, and how lies propagate and solidify.

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Authors Meet Critics

Recap

“Redistributing the Poor: Jails, Hospitals, and the Crisis of Law and Fiscal Austerity”

Recorded on April 19, 2021, this panel featured a conversation about the book, "Redistributing the Poor: Jails, Hospitals, and the Crisis of Law and Fiscal Austerity," by Armando Lara-Millán, Assistant Professor in the UC Berkeley Department of Sociology at UC Berkeley. Co-sponsored by the Center for Study of Law and Society (CSLS).

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Podcast

Interview

Matrix Podcast: Interview with Rebecca Herman

In this podcast, Michael Watts interviews Rebecca Herman, Assistant Professor of History, UC Berkeley. Professor Herman's research and writing examine modern Latin American history in a global context. Her first book, forthcoming from Oxford University Press, reconstructs the history of U.S. military basing in Latin America during World War II.

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Podcast

Interview

Matrix Podcast: Interview with Brittany Birberick

In this episode, Professor Michael Watts interviews Brittany Birberick, an anthropology PhD student at the University of California, Berkeley — and a former Matrix Dissertation Fellow. Birberick's dissertation project focuses on urban transformation in Johannesburg, South Africa. More broadly, she writes and thinks about economies, migration, temporality, and aesthetics within an urban context.

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Solidarity and Strife

Recap

The True Costs of Misinformation: Producing Moral and Technical Order in a Time of Pandemonium

Recorded on February 19, 2021, this video features a lecture by Joan Donovan, Research Director for the Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy at Harvard University.

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